Arab and International Affairs (AIA) is a multidisciplinary field of study, gathering together the international aspects of politics, economics, history, law, and sociology. Joining both academia and public policy processes, AIA draws from many fields besides political science – such as sociology, anthropology, history, economics, and many others. These fields shape this dynamic discipline and contemporary world politics alike. AIA involves the exploration of the nature and exercise of power within an international system, the changing roles of state actors, non-state actors and institutions, international decision-making, international institutions, as well as many other contemporary dimensions of international relations.
The increased role of civil society actors is a major recent phenomenon attributed to the advancement in communication as well as to the social, political and economic transformations. This program looks at a wide spectrum of civil society actors and their role in policy-making. We study how civil society actors organize themselves into advocacy coalitions and how policy networks are formed to influence policy processes and outcomes. We also look at policy research institutes and their contribution to the translation of knowledge to policies. The media's expanding role, which some claim to be a major player in catalyzing protests and revolutions in the Arab world, will also be explored.
Launched in February 2008, this program boasts 35 AUB multi-disciplinary faculty members, whose research and publications encompass a wealth of climate change and environmental issues.
Given the significant role of education in society and the key role of youth in development, the program on Education and Youth Research is well positioned to address issues of youth and education in the Arab world with the aim of informing policy for improved education achievement and for addressing youth issues as they relate to education and employment.
The Energy Policy and Security in the Middle East Program was launched in 2016 as a Middle East-based, interdisciplinary, platform to examine, inform and impact energy and security policies, regionally and globally. The Program closely monitors the challenges and opportunities of the shift towards alternative energy sources with a focus on nuclear power and the Middle East.
The aim of the Refugee Research and Policy in the Arab World Program is to collect, support and initiate research relevant to refugees – whether Syrian, Palestinian, Iraqi, or others.
The aim of the Issam Fares Institute's Social Justice and the City program is to formulate an agenda for research that establishes a partnership between scholars, policy-makers, and activists in Lebanon (and beyond) working towards more inclusive cities. The program seeks to act as a platform where scholars, policy-makers, and activists can share reflections, experiences, and strategies (i) documenting, analyzing and reflecting on ongoing urban processes affecting the organization and life of the city, (ii) sharing and validating research with activists, affected communities, and other social groups who are potentially interested in sharing both the acquired competence and the pool of research tactics, and (iii) supporting and informing initiatives that hope to influence change through debates, media, publications, and advocacy.